Invest NI creates 11,000 jobs and drives £1.7bn in sales in 2017
INVEST NI helped to deliver almost 11,000 new jobs and generate £1.7 billion in additional sales last year, its latest figures show.
The support body has said it is on track to deliver the lofty goals set out in its ambitious four-year business strategy, published last year. A total of 10,970 additional jobs were created in 2017, while £1.2bn and £0.8bn was generated through external and export sales respectively. As part of the business strategy Invest NI has targeted the creation of between 30,000 and 40,000 jobs by 2021 as well as total sales of £3.2bn to £4.2bn. The strategy also sets out lofty goals of £2.4bn to £3.1bn in external sales and £0.8 to £1.2bn in export sales, the latter target already met in the first year. The results come from a cohort of over 1,500 businesses that Invest NI works closely with.
Further progress as part of the strategy has been reported through the addition of 10 new international offices and through the launch of new international and education strategies.
The agency also supported 23 new businesses to set up in Northern Ireland, one of the highest totals recorded in the past five years.
Invest NI chief executive, Alastair Hamilton hailed the "exceptional" results.
"While this is great progress for one year into a four year strategy we are mindful that there remain real challenges ahead in light of Brexit and US policy changes. So while we are very encouraged by this year's export outturn we will be continuing to review our support offering to ensure it helps businesses meet the new challenges ahead and will monitor export performance closely."